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Posts posted by Dakimbrell

  1. This is why we don't judge the shade or color of paint at most contests.

    However, the shade of paint does effect the opinions the viewer. Those final moments of the judges trying to decide which will be the last three models and which will be first or second, etc, everything comes into play.

    I use to use Model Master paint straight out of the bottle, but now I do a 50-50 mix of flat white and RAF Middlestone to get the Panzer Yellow I like. I prefer a bluish tint to my Panzer Grey, even though evidence shows it has a brown tint.

    As far as I know, there is no exact scaling of paint chart. When it comes down to it, people see colors differently...at least they seem to....so the best you can do is try to find a shade you like and hope it works for others. However, on very dark colors like black, Panzer Grey, etc, I would recommend lighting the color a bit regardless of scale. Tires should always be done in dark grey, not black.


  2. 10 hours ago, PeteJ said:

    Considering that most of what we model is kept outdoors, I honestly doubt that "scale effect" is really the culprit, although I won't suggest it doesn't existence.

    The effect is not based on the light source. It is a well noted effect cited in numerous books such as he Kookaburra Luftwaffe Painting Guide on page 5..."the camouflage colors should not be strictly as laid down in any RLM color charts, but should be a few shades lighter if one is to achieve any sort of realism."

    The method we use to apply decals....a clear gloss, the decal, a clear gloss and then a clear flat also sharpens and brightens the colors. This is a method similar to that of the 17th century Dutch Masters like Rembrandt and van Dyke. Everything old is new again.

    I also saw an F-4 Phantom with the rescue arrow painted off register...just like a few decal sheets I have seen.


  3. 11 minutes ago, rcboater said:

    My pet peeve are tanks and figures in a diorama that were apparently “beamed in”, because there are no tracks in the snow/mud  to show how they got there.... or the aircraft on the grass at the edge of the taxiway - apparently not even the wheels of a 10,000 pound aircraft can flatten that tough grass!

    That's one of mine, also. But I have pictures of tanks in North Africa where the tracks are clearly not sinking into the soil. However, they are making some tracks on the surface.


  4. 1 hour ago, ipmsusa2 said:

    For all practical purposes, it really doesn't matter that real autmotive paint or real aircraft paint is a slightly darker tone on a smaller scale model.

    I would disagree. Far too often colors look too dark to be correct. At Chattanooga, I judged a Panzer IV that was almost black looking. Of course, we don't judge the color, but shade has a definite visual effect, and when it comes down to the final points, not looking "right" can cost you a first place, or bump you to fourth place. Noting that the paint used on a model is the real color is wasted on me as a judge leaving me unimpressed.

    But an exact shade of paint is absurd. There are simply too many variables.


  5. 23 hours ago, PeteJ said:

    Really?  I've been using real car paint for 30 years.

    I was not criticizing the use of real automotive paint. I was criticizing the idea that the real color is the correct shade for a smaller model. If you are trying to make the model look realistic, the color should be lighter the smaller the model. If you put the real thing and the finished model together under the same light, most will say the model is a darker shade of paint. So yes, I find it silly to use the real automotive paint straight out of the can to achieve a visually authentic look.


  6. 3 hours ago, ipmsusa2 said:

    The object, if we're honest with ourselves, is to create a finished model that looks like the real thing as much as possible.  This applies to both standalone models and dioramas/vignettes

    I basically have said this numerous times, but immediately get told we don't judge any of this, which is nonsense. Which is why I started this string in an effort to get people to discuss what elements are important and why. Tor example, accuracy and authenticity imply slightly different things.

    That you have a client that wants something a particular color is not an issue here...perhaps not even relevant. That is a whole different ball game from doing a model for a contest. Instead of satisfying one person, your are trying to satisfy several who all have a different opinion.

    First, there is yourself...what color looks correct to you. Then there are the judges who may disagree and those that are sticklers for that mythical perfect color. And everyone may be wrong anyway. Hinze the wisdom of not judging shade of color.

    But that does not mean some things are not simply wrong.


  7. 2 hours ago, ipmsusa2 said:

    And to think we wear ourselves out trying to match an "accurate color chip

    Maybe you did, but I haven't worried about the exact color since 1976. Even though the Haze Grey was manufactured in a modern plant under peace time conditions, we still mixed the cans of paint to ensure consistency. Anyone that thinks there is an exact shade of paint beyond a color chip, is living in a cloudy cookoo land. The true check of a beginner is the "What is the best shade of...."question.

    The smaller something is, the darker the same shade of paint will look on it. I always find it a bit silly when a friend uses a real car paint on his model.


    • Like 1
  8. People get different signals from IPMS. On the one hand, we say build what you enjoy and do your own thing. Then we do the contests and get very picky about what gets trophies. The guy who did a lot of work.....but got all sorts of stuff wrong from authenticity to basic craftmanship.... wonders why he didn't win anything. Why is filling a seam so important? Look at all that detail I added! Look how big my diorama is!


  9. Building a model is the boring part, to me. Research makes it interesting. Having a fairly accurate kit to start with is a plus. This allows me to be creative. 

    Obviously, most members like authenticity. The range of books which are available and the increasing accuracy of kits proves that beyond a doubt. 

    Interstingly, I know a guy that feels filling seams is boring and takes away from the fun of building and painting. (His exact words.) He thinks it is unfair for IPMS to worry about seams and such. Go figure!


  10. That is why we don’t judge shade of paint. There are simply too many variables.

    Still, people will build stuff and do things without even looking at the most basic references. I’ve seen engine decks opening the wrong way, “tank crew” wearing infantry harness, markings put on backwards, etc. 

    New information comes out all the time, so it is understandable some things get done wrong, but some stuff is pretty silly.....like a Me-109 G10 done in Battle of Britain markings. Why? Because the builder assumedall Me-109s were the same. 


  11. 3 hours ago, RGronovius said:

    As a lifelong US Army tanker and modeler, I always cringe when I see items piled on the blast panels of an Abrams tank or tank rounds loosely stacked on top of a turret like they are pick up sticks. Other items like rifles laying about in a diorama or set on an part of a vehicle that they would fall off as soon as the vehicle went into motion.

    It may look good, but not accurate.

    I agree, but at the same time realize these are things often hard to judge without first hand knowledge. Every operational vehicle I have been on or in is covered with foot prints. Still, many build their models as a case of immaculate perception.

    But it isn't fair for someone to do things correctly, but lose to a model with a lot of inaccurate, but aesthetically appealing details.

    I would love to see someone do a piece for the Journal on the basic dos and don'ts of modern armor stowage. It wouldn't have to be an in depth thing, just a photos and such showing authentic things. The more people know will make them better builders and judges.


    • Like 2
  12. 16 minutes ago, Nick Filippone said:

    Those of you who want to call we judges dishonest should screw up whatever modicum of courage you have- if any - and do it to our faces!

    Actually, I was obliquely trying to say was that those who support hiding names don't trust the judges to be honest. As for me, I think the judges are honest and the system works well enough that childishly hiding the name is pointless. I don't believe the hundreds of National judges are in the least prejudiced by articles, web posts, or names in plain sight and at no time did I say they were dishonest, except in your imagination.

    Nick, you refer to this conversation as feckless. How so? I am politely questioning an unnecessary and outmoded tradition. While it may be a somewhat trivial subject, it relates to time being wasted at the National contest for no good reason. The tradition has no basis in solid fact and no one has produced any proof to support it, while the opposite is true. If you think about it, it actually hiding the names is a bit of an insult to the integrity of those judging.

    I say names should be visible because IPMS judges are scrupulously honest and do not need or want to be treated like children.

    Dak, National Judge

  13. While many speak of hiding the names as a way to ensure objectivity, there is no data to support the concept. It is just an unnecessary custom we have carried over for the past four decades. There are numerous groups which show the builder's name and have no problem. I'm still trying to figure out...if the judging is inherently honest....why showing the entrant's name would prejudice at least three judges and those supervising them.

    If a model has been published in the Journal or other magazine, wouldn't that prejudice some people, also? "It's been published, so it must be good, right?" At one seminar in Chattanooga I saw at least one model which was in the competition. Might that not prejudice some people?


  14. 9 hours ago, ipmsusa2 said:

    One man's accuracy is another man's accuarcy.  This is particularly true when you build for clients.  Worse, my Williams Bros C-46A was taken to task in a review for the shade of O.D. on an O.D./Neutral Gray scheme.  Their comment?  I probably did what many modelers do, grabbed what I had on hand.  Believe me, in a discussion on accuracy, you can't win for losing.


    However, as I have repeatedly said in numerous posts, on numerous strings, SHADE of color cannot be judged because there are too many variables. The best you can achieve is aesthetic appeal.


  15. One of the problems we have is that every contest is different. One year a category is sparsely entered and the next it is murderous. This makes it hard to clearly discuss the subject because we are all remembering different events.

    There is also the individual concept of what looks good. Popular now is pre-shading and highly accented panel lines. They do make the model much more striking, but are they truly authentic? In some cases yes and some no, but regardless, the model will be judged against what is in the category and not strictly the opinion of the judges.

    Back in the late seventies and early eighties, there was a popular weathering style that turned out to be based on vehicles in out door museum displays. So, many would truthfully say they saw this very look on the real thing.In a sense, it was realistic and authentic, plus visually very eye grabbing. However, it was totally unrealistic for operational vehicles.

    This is why we use judging teams and endeavor to mix the knowledge base. Some don't understand this and think we bump models on a whim. I have never worked on a team which quibbled over tiny detail points. Even major points are often ignored giving them the benefit of the doubt.

    10 hours ago, PeteJ said:

    So to me craftsmanship incorporates the  skill of accurately replicating the viewing positions so the proportions look accurate.   After all, we are building something to look like an accurate representation of the real thing and that includes how it looks when we see the real thing

    I think this is well said and I agree.


  16. 45 minutes ago, ghodges said:

    As for the aesthetics, I prefer AUTHENTICITY over accuracy. By that, I mean there's a ballpark you can stay inside of and meet people's (and judges) expectations while straying from absolute accuracy.

    Generally, I agree. Even VERY accurate kits would look odd if blown up to full size. But what about things like equipment in the wrong time? I once saw a modern dumpster used in a WWII diorama and it really bugged me. Should we ignore things like that, and if we do, where do we draw the line? (Sidewinders on a Zero?)

    Except in gross colors, I would never judge colors because there are too many variables.

    Accuracy seems to mean different things to different people and I think this is part of the problem. To me, judging accuracy does not mean putting calibers to the model to check length width, or thickness because again there are too many variables....Measuring the length of the crocodile over the back gives you a different measurement than between the pegs.

    It does mean looking at the variant of the model for the time and place specified. It does mean gravity has an effect. Also physical reality....how did the tank get into the river? Why are the guys calmly drinking coffee while ten feet away a major fire fight is going on? Would you put a Flak position right in front of the revetment opening?

    45 minutes ago, ghodges said:

    As for accuracy, IPMSUSA doesn't judge it.

    In this, I disagree. To a certain degree these things go hand in hand. Mold seams, mold marks, silvered decals, and glue globs are not found on the real thing and the reason they are considered bad craftsmanship is because we don't find them (generally) on the real thing. So filling a mold release mark IS an attempt at creating accuracy or authenticity.

    However, I should note, I am constantly surprised and intrigued by the exception to the rules. Like the real F-4 Phantom with off register rescue arrows. Or this seam...


  17. When is craftsmanship more important than accuracy? (Putting seat belts in backwards simply because they look good that way.) How do you tell the difference? How do people feel about a model "looking good" but being totally inaccurate in multiple aspects?( An A6M5 Zero, armed with Sidewinder missiles, in Dutch markings, being flown by a Russian unit in the Battle of Britain) At what point should the builder take aesthetics into consideration. (Yes, the color is right, but it is just ugly.) Should aesthetics be more important than trying to make the model accurate? (Like putting a Ford engine in a Dodge because you think the detail looks better.)

    Having had some interesting discussions with people about accuracy and craftsmanship, I have come to believe many talk about these things, but are all on different pages about how they should be applied to models and contest judging.



  18. 3 hours ago, Roktman said:

    . For example if one guy adds all the seat belts to a plane, but has them in wrong, or upside down, whatever... and it's noticed,  that's a strike against the model. Where as the guy that didn't add seat belts and just built OOB, won't get a strike for not having them.  The same goes for the guy who builds a tank and has it pristine like it just came out of the factory. There's no strikes for no dirt. But if someone else added the dirt, and it looks good that's one up for the guy that did the extra work.

    I've done the seminar several times. One thing most people forget is the remarks are mostly guidelines, not gospel. As the models are culled for the winning top three the judges get more picky and they have to do so. When a highly detailed model is discovered to NOT have something so basic as drilling out machine gun barrels, it looses a chance at first place.

    This is also why it is important to put remarks about "odd" elements of the model. The judges may not know about the one passion pink Me-109G-6 R/2 in JG300 during the last three days of April 1945. For example, look at this very ugly SEAM I found on the suspension of a real Sd.Kfz 234/4 armored car. How many of you would gig that as poor craftsmanship, if you saw it without documentation?

    Kevin's remarks again show we do judge some accuracy....unless you find parts assembled backwards as details to be ignored. Again, accuracy and craftsmanship go hand in hand. The trick to being a good judge is to be able to gauge where the line is between the two.



  19. 47 minutes ago, Nick Filippone said:

    A blob of glue is sloppy modeling, lousy craftsmanship, pure and simple! It is what eliminates an entry loooong before accuracy is even thought about in the judging process. Nick Filippone, Seniors National Judge 

    True and well said, but the glue glob is still a point of accuracy as well as craftsmanship.

    You can argue the water rushing in a hole sank the ship or the torpedo making the hole sank the ship, but it is all related.

    When you look at the big winners at an IPMS event, it is always a well built and highly accurate model.


  20. 1 hour ago, crimsyn1919 said:

    I have an extra antenna on a plane that that specific sub-variant of the real thing didn't have, that's an accuracy issue. If next to that antenna I have a big blob of glue on the canopy, that's a craftsmanship issue

    An extra antenna is exactly the type of accuracy issue which is not and should not be judged. Time and again it has been shown various small changes cannot always be clearly documented. Also, research has shown changes to production did not come in clearly defined points. That is the point of not judging colors, and details.

    A glob of glue is still also an accuracy issue. Most vehicles and aircraft do not usually have a big glob of glue holding on a part. This is both an accuracy and craftmanship issue. Jerry cans and packs do not magically attach to the side of tanks. They require rope, wire, and straps. To a certain point, craftmanship and accuracy go hand in hand. Such things as this are common sense accuracy points, like gravity. This is a point many like to pretend doesn't exist.

    This is also an issue of consistency. If you construct a demolished building and yet leave a neat path for a vehicle, you have ignored consistency.


  21. 2 hours ago, crimsyn1919 said:

    I'm not saying that a seam line is accurate, but that issues like that should fall under the category of craftsmanship issues as they represent an problem with the application of skill in the construction, not with research into the specific shape, colour, etc. of the subject.

    What we consider as good craftsmanship is based on what we consider accurate. Based on what I see win at events, this is simple truth. I fail to understand why this concept upsets some. The rules are clear and accuracy does count for some element of judging, but not all. Nor should it.

    We spend thousands of dollars on reference material and more on the aftermarket items like P.E. and resin, not to mention the "right" color paint. Whole companies have been based on producing the most "accurate" item.

    One of the most common questions posted on any forum, anywhere, is "What is the most accurate xxxx?" The silliest question is what is the most correct color paint, but it still gets asked. As a group, we are obsessed with accuracy and expect the winning models to reflect it to some degree.

    2 hours ago, crimsyn1919 said:

    As for the bright pink 109... I may be in the minority, but I would say that if is the best aircraft on the table, then it deserves the award, and I would personally congratulate the builder for his or her creativity.

    But, it a regular category, I doubt it would be seen as the best model on the table. Unusual things tend to be seen as poor craftmanship, even when proof is provided. And I doubt anyone would do such a model (all the bells and whistles)....because they would see it as a waste of time to do something deliberately that inaccurate and enter it in a regular category. Still, depending on the number of entries, it could still win.


    2 hours ago, crimsyn1919 said:

    As an aside, I am currently working on a P40 that I plan to paint bright pink.

    I knew a pilot that flew...according to him....a bright pink P-40 in North Africa. The OD tended to fade in the sun. Still, it wasn't glossy or camouflaged with a second shade of pink. with pale pink undersides.

    However, in dioramas, neat rubble is a question of craftsmanship because it falls under consistency, but it is also inaccurate. Blown up buildings do not set their debris in nice neat piles so the vehicle doesn't have to articulate its suspension. If you are not willing to do the needed work, then don't do the model that way.


  22. 9 minutes ago, crimsyn1919 said:

    I think this argument over "accuracy" is coming down to semantics, and the issue that keeps coming up is that Dak's definition of "accuracy" that considers things like seam lines and glue blobs to be accuracy issues is one that isn't really shared by anyone else.

    Personally, I would put things into three categories.

    1. Craftsmanship: This is stuff like seam lines, alignment, brush strokes in the paint, glue blobs on the canopy, etc.

    2. Composition: Stuff like vehicles on soft ground with no tracks to how they got there, how the various elements go together in such a way that they tell a story and make sense. This is primarily a factor in dioramas, but also can be an issue in figures where you are painting highlights and shadows and need to have a consistent light source.

    3. Accuracy: Does it represent something that his historically accurate -- are the markings a historically accurate representation of a specific vehicle, is it the right shade of paint, does it have the right number of rivets, etc. This is something that we really can't and probably shouldn't judge for a litany of reasons, including the vast subject matter expertise needed to prove someone right or wrong on every possible individual marking or detail on every possible variant of every possible vehicle.

    So, you are saying a large seam down the spine of an airplane and floating road wheels on a tank are “accurate”?

    There is no need to do most of the things we consider good craftsmanship if it is not to make the model more accurate.

    It is easy to judge filling a seam and not so easy to judge the shade of paint and the do not judge the colt for that reason. 

    However, no matter how good it is built, I doubt people would give a top award to Hartman’s Me-109 done in bright pinks.

    We also know A6M5 Zeros did not fly in Dutch markings during the Battle of Britain. The Battle of the Bulge, maybe, but definitely not the Battle of Britain.

    No judging accuracy is aimed at minor technical points of which only a handful might be aware.


  23. When we talk of accuracy, or rather not judging it, we generally are referring to checking to see if something is the exactly the correct length or width, the right color and things like that. We do look at things like gravity. A Panzer crewman holding a tool, is one thing, but holding the jack of a Tiger tank on his shoulder is pure fantasy.

    As much as I know about Tigers and Panthers, I doubt I would ever try to criticize detail points without a detail book and even then it would be iffy. Judging a shade of color is the most absolutely asinine thing to worry about. Still, we do look accuracy in how a model sets....no floating wheels, or similar things. That is why I say "neat" rubble is contradictory when it comes to dioramas. And you shouldn't put the model is an impossible or very improbable situation....say a sixty ton tank in a blown up building with a basement.

    I note most builders do not put foot prints on the tops of vehicles and I think this is inaccurate, but I don't judge the lack as a point unless others have included it and done it well.


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